There are several reasons why someone would need to sell a house quickly. Whether it’s to stop repossession, to downsize for retirement or to relocate for a new job, your need for a fast property sale will change the selling process considerably.
There are many ways to approach this potentially tricky process, all of which depend on your specific circumstances. Here are seven house selling tips most homeowners find useful when time is of the essence.
1. Find a Good Local Estate Agent
While traditional estate agents charge significant fees for their services, they are often best placed to secure a quick house sale for the best possible price. If you need to find a buyer quickly, it’s always worth taking a little time to research local agents in your area.
An estate agent with experience in selling homes like yours should be able to hit the ground running. They will have existing contacts, as well as an intrinsic understanding of the local property market — both of which can expedite a house sale considerably.
Research local agents online, and ask friends and family for recommendations. If you can find an agent that has a proven track record of selling houses fast in your neighbourhood — and for a good price — your chances of securing the quick sale you need should be reasonably high.
2. Be Realistic About Your Price Expectations
In order to sell your home quickly, you will need to maximise interest in it. The best way to attract the attention of buyers is to offer value, which means you may need to moderate your price expectations.
But it’s important to differentiate an asking or guide price from a final sale price. For example, you can check Land Registry records to see how much houses similar to yours have sold for in recent months. But these prices may be very different to those listed in the Rightmove house price index.
Set an asking price that represents value, but gives you a good chance of achieving something close to your property’s market value. Generally speaking, the faster you need to sell your home, the lower the initial asking price should be. Use the likes of The Land Registry website and Rightmove to help you make a decision, but keep in mind that this is not an exact science.
Tip: Never let potential buyers know you need to sell quickly, or they might use this information to drive down the sale price.
3. Give Your Property Kerb Appeal
While the purchase of a home is a big financial commitment, it is also an emotional event for most buyers. If your home connects with prospective buyers from the outset, it stands a much greater chance of being snapped up quickly.
The term “kerb appeal” refers to the reaction of prospective buyers when they set eyes on your home for the very first time. If your property is well maintained, smart and welcoming, that emotional connection between your home and the buyer can be immediate — increasing the chances of a quick offer.
To make sure your property has “kerb appeal,” attend to any repairs to the exterior of your home. Clean the windows, window frames and doors, and make sure any paintwork is in pristine condition. Pick up litter, tidy the garden and do everything you can to create a picture postcard scene for buyers when they pull up outside.
4. Empower Buyers to Imagine Themselves Living in Your Home
Prospective buyers who find it easy to imagine themselves living in your home might be persuaded to make a quick offer. But this will be difficult if your property is filled with your personal items, or decorated in an unusual, distinctive way.
Depersonalise your property to create a blank canvas. This starts by cleaning, tidying and decluttering. Keep personal photos and distinctive art to a minimum, and try to create a minimalistic feel throughout your home. Remove unnecessary furniture to create the illusion of extra space — placing items into temporary storage if necessary.
Distinctive decor with lots of bright colours might be to your taste, but it may not appeal to prospective buyers. If these buyers become distracted by very distinctive decor, they may struggle to envisage their own life in the property. Choose natural, neutral tones throughout your home — even if that means adding the odd coat of paint here and there.
5. Take Care of Repairs and Maintenance
Selling houses fast often relies on appealing to the widest group of prospective buyers possible. If your property is in need of repair, maintenance or updating, people with stretched budgets and first-time buyers might be put off. Make sure everything in your home is in good working order. The idea is to create a welcoming, comfortable home that is ready to move into without the need for major works.
6. Light it Up
Nothing opens up a home during the daytime than natural light, so harness it wherever you can. This might mean you need to take some blinds down or heavy curtains down, or it could involve moving furniture — both inside and outside the property. You can create the illusion of more natural light by positioning mirrors directly opposite windows to enhance the available sunlight.
Don’t forget to light your home well for nighttime property viewings too. Take a walk around your property, and look for shadows and dark corners. Wherever you find them, brighten them up with floor lamps or spotlights. A bright, spacious home is often very appealing to house buyers during an initial viewing, so do everything you can to enhance natural and artificial light.
7. Look for Alternative Ways to Sell a House Quickly
If you’re willing to try alternative house selling methods, asking a specialist house buying firm such as Flying Homes is a possible option. These companies specialise in buying property fast, without the need for protracted price negotiations. They value your home on a no-obligation basis, and make you an offer. It is then up to you whether or not to accept the offer or try different property selling avenues. You avoid estate agent fees, as well as the notoriously stressful marketing process.
Once an offer is accepted, the house buying company takes care of all the legal legwork. They keep you abreast of developments, and let you know the moment the sale completes — before transferring the funds into your bank. If all goes well, you can expect the sale process to complete within two weeks of accepting an offer.
Selling property fast can be a very difficult process, as there are never any guarantees when it comes to the UK housing market. But if you have a plan of action and realistic expectations, there’s a good chance of securing the quick home sale you need.